Ibane’s ramblings

“The biggest danger, that of losing oneself, can pass off in the world as quietly as if it were nothing; every other loss, an arm, a leg, five dollars, a wife, etc is bound to be noticed.” S. Kierkegaard

Archive for Art

A decade of emptiness…maybe?

The other day discussing with some friends about music, art and Tiger Woods, I raised the question ‘What would they consider the movement including music, fashion, art,…that could define the last decade? As for example punk did in the 70s’. The answers were vague and there was not for example a band that we could agree to be like the band of the decade. A bunch of good bands but not the band that you will listen to them in 20 years and you will say ‘that’s so 2000’.

I have done this exercise with different groups of friends and people from different backgrounds and the answers are as different as individuals. My first thoughts were that the inability to find what would be the cultural movement that represent the decade means that we have left behind a decade of emptiness and decadence in creativity. Later, thinking about it a bit more, I thought that this decade is the decade of the facebooks, twitters, myspaces, blogs,…it has been the decade where everyone feeling some creativity inside could share with millions and millions of people almost instantly, and if something cool is happening it gets old-fashion as quick as it gets trendy. So it might be that we have lived some good moments during this decade, it might be that we just missed it because we were busy with facebook.

In any case, there are still some days to end this decade so there is time to have some band of the decade and all that. Oh no…Enrique Iglesias singing again. I guess not then.

the less option

Nowadays when we need to make a choice the options available have really become limited. Today I find myself choosing between a horrible movie or horrendously boring one. So I always try to choose the one I think that it is going to be _less_ boring. And this is exapnding to other areas of my life, I am choosing the politician that I think that will be _less_ incompetent and will steal _less_ from public funds, I am choosing the bank which will ripped me off _less_, the mobile network operator that will abuse _less_ with their roaming, and in that way we can go on and on…so I am not sure if it is me that my state of mind is troubled these days or it is just that the world has become a really _less_ quality place. No doubt it must be the first reason…or _less_

The Frenzy Race to Culture

godfatherihaveaproblemThese days seem to me that there is no time to taste and enjoy all the cultural offer that in an overwhelming avalanche of happenings, events, movies, books, theater plays…is offered to us. The other day I went to see the last movie of Woody Allen (I will review it in another post), and one of the , I went with, stated:”It is ok but I can’t wait for the next one”, I got surprised by this comment. We had barely come out from the dark room and we were talking about next one. Why this rush?  where is this anxiety coming from to consume art and culture compulsively?

Nowadays we have the most vast and extense access to culture and art than ever. Even if you have the privilige to have available the time to attend every possible event that you might be interested in you would need three or four lives. My first thoughts about this lead me to that art and culture have been infected also by the immediacy that we live in our daily life. Nowadays nothing is meant to last, everything is instant, you need to consume it and then you throw away.

Most of the times, I feel like fighting against this but this attitude places me immediately in the category of old-fashioned guy that thinks that any past time is better. And it is far from truth, I really enjoy what it is going on and I am lurking all the time new trends and trying to pay attention what it is out of there, but I refuse to enter in this frenzy race, some times even sounds like a competion, to attend events with no criteria. So I am investing my time discerning what is in my opinion worthy and what it is not. And if I find something that I have enjoyed, lately it is challenging (as I have posted it previously I think that mediocrity has gained a lot of space, visiting some Modern Art Musems some crap has literally taken the physical space), I will take my time to taste it and try to hold it as much as possible.

I support and I think that it is great advance that we can access to so much stuff, and therefore we have gained more freedom, however I also believe that also forces us to be more selective and to take care of the quality and be alert.

Chess Story

chess-story I read this short novel last summer, and I found the book among many during my recent moving to my new place. I really enjoyed this novel, not only because I am a mediocre chess player, also Stefan Zweig’s narrative is full of dynamism, everything is rounded and you always have the feeling that he is saying more than you are really catching in the first reading.

The story is taken place in one of those transalantic cruises. I’ve always wondered how it’d be to have been in one of that cruises, having many days ahead and being just in the middle of the Ocean, with no possibility to change your environment, being stuck with certain people and circumstances. In a certain way, I find that attracting. For some odd reason I am always thinking that any past time is better and more interesting that the current one. It does not mean that I am wasting my present living in the past and looking forward to future, it is just that I like to look back some times…

Cultural mediocrity

I don’t know if I am quite alone in my thought that nowadays the mediocrity in the art arena is the majority. I am reviewing the films, books, music,…that lately I have been trying to enjoy with no success in most of the cases. And it is really difficult for me to think about a director today that could be compared to Hitchcock, John Ford, Howard Hawks,…just to mention few. For instance, the marketing machine of Hollywood tried to sell M. Night Shyamalan as the new Hitchcock thanks to the movie “Sixth Sense”, which it is an ok movie. However his last work, “The happening” is so poor that there is nothing to rescue.

Same in the literature, thinking about some writer that could be compared to the great names like  James, Dostoevsky, Stendhal or being just remarkable enough that he/she is not forgotten in the next Christmas time is almost impossible.

In the music we are celebrating that bands like the unbearable Led Zeppelin are getting back. It is really an archeological mission to find any fresh or something new in the music scene. Everything sounds like being heard before. It is really boring.

I read from a Spanish philosopher that it is really depressing to attend to the decay of a brilliant period. It feels so right that statement.

Poems and The Sea

O CAPTAIN! my Captain, our fearful trip is done,
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won,
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting,
While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring;
But O heart! heart! heart!
O the bleeding drops of red,
Where on the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

Walt Whitman (1819-1892)

I am not a often reader of poetry, but the few times I do, I just like it without any reason that can be explained with words. Some poems are just beautiful. For example, this one from Whitman, when I am reading it, it is easy me for to place me in some remote sea. I have said in a previous post my fascination for the sea, and in particular the Mediterranean, that takes me to think about my favourite comic character Corto Maltese, who needs a separate entry…

“…Marin, tu chériras toujours la mer…”

About being locked

It is the dream all of corporation or company to create that product that make their customers slaves and that they found themselves locked with their product. In certain way it is not bad approach and even noble, but the problem comes when the drivers to get this customer loyalty. Most of the corporation enjoys to lock their customers with legal tricks in the agreements that forces you to read them very carefully, which bores me to death.

Telecommunication and internet providers are one of those corporations that they really enjoy to punish their customers knowing that they have very little chances to get away. The biggest Spanish mobile operator made me to write a letter explaining the reasons to close my contract with them, as if just because I wanted it was not enough. A Finnish Internet provider has forced me to pay some months extra even I have sent a clear email saying that I want to cancel the subscription. I have known sects that are easier to get away.

I would like to ask from here humbly to these corporations to try to lock me but instead of cheating me because their services are so astonishing good that I would not leave even if the competitor offers me for free.

Now you have the horrible feeling being cheated and locked by these corporations. It would be great to introduce some ethics courses in the MBA programs and not only profit, OPEX, cost analysis…

Indiana Jones and the kingdom of ruined dreams

Last Thursday I watched the last film of my admired Indiana Jones. I have special affect for Indiana Jones films, the first one, Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, was the responsible for discovering my passion about films. Their scenes impacted me very deep and also it brought my first cinematographic love, Marion Ravenwood, played by the beautiful Karen Allen. I still consider that the scene where she is dressed with that white dress…

However, in this last episode all that imaginary that I have been keeping in my mind since my childhood has been ruined, seeing Marion like an old lady, seeing Indiana Jones doing slow moves, the wrinkles,…I don’t know, I got the feeling that someone was slapping me and saying wake up, it was just a dream, this is the reality.

The film itself is not bad, not great though, it has their moments and Cate Blanchet, as always, even playing the evil side here, she is superb (I am not objective here, she is one of my loves in the world of movies). I did not like the patriotic touch where Indiana is showed as a great American, also the space thing was a bit too weird, although I understand that Mr. Spielberg got nostalgic and wanted to remember E.T. and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The son of Indiana Jones nothing to remember and the disappointment of seeing Karen Allen so old.

Coming out from the film theater I was thinking that it is true what they say about some dreams should never come true…